Miles Jupp: ‘I’d like to be in a Sunday night detective series’

Miles Jupp
Miles Jupp

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Miles Jupp is a hard-working performer who has worked in feature films such as Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Johnny English Reborn, as well as television hits including Never Mind the Buzzcocks and The Thick Of It.

The 34-year-old comic has also performed regularly on radio and written his own show for Radio 4, In and Out of the Kitchen, as well as regular stand-up appearances the length and breadth of the country.

But despite his incredibly varied career, there is one role that the amiable comic can’t seem to shake off – that of Archie the Inventor from CBeebies television series Balamory.

‘I have all sorts of memories of Balamory and bits of it I can’t really remember,’ says Miles.

‘There were over 250 episodes and it finished nearly 10 years ago, but some bits were really fun. Especially the tours.

‘It was a good group of people and I’m fond of my colleagues. I’m still in touch with many of them.

‘I’d think about working in children’s television again if it came along, but probably not in front of the camera.

‘If I could be the voice in a cartoon or something, then that would be unproblematic.’

Miles is still keen to work in other types of television too and has great memories of his time on TV music quiz Never Mind the Buzzocks.

He says: ‘I think I just sat there and laughed quite a lot, and was then occasionally baffled.

‘I think I was only on it because Frankie Boyle was hosting and he’s a friend. He was very funny on it.’

Television work certainly seems to agree with Miles and has encouraged some sleuthy aspirations in the classy comic.

‘I like doing Would I Lie To You and Have I Got News For You.

‘ Really, though, I’d like to be in a detective series. Perhaps one of those Sunday night ones that’s set somewhere pretty. Or maybe something a bit bleaker.’

As well as his small screen leanings, Miles has spent his fair share of time working in film too and is looking to broaden his big screen horizons.

He reveals: ‘I’d certainly like to do more film acting.

‘It’s awesome being involved in something that feels like a massive machine, and it’s fun going to exciting places and meeting people you admire.

‘Really I want to get better at doing it, at the actual business of acting in films.

‘I’ve had parts in about 10 films now I think, usually fairly small parts, but it’s given me a chance to watch a lot of people who are really good at doing what they do doing what they do.

‘I would also like to do more theatre. Last year I spent nine months doing an Alan Bennett play at The National Theatre, and that was one of the most thrilling things to be involved with.So, I’d love to do more of that.

‘If I get to act, though, that’s always up to other people. That’s why it’s really important to keep writing.’

And Miles is true to his word, touring with his new show, Miles Jupp Is The Chap You’re Thinking Of.

This is the first solo show for Miles since 2012, so how is he feeling about performing his new material?

‘It’s really exciting going straight on the road with a brand new show.

‘I’ve never done that before, I’ve always taken things to Edinburgh and then done them there for a month. So this feels a lot like grabbing hold of the zipwire and then lifting your feet up.

‘I reflect on what I’ve been up to domestically, and then later on take a look at this country of ours.

‘There’s some silly stuff in there about, you know, things I notice and things that irritate me.’

The son of a United Reformed Church minister, privately educated and with an accent that wouldn’t sound out of place at Balmoral, the notion of class is something that understandably forms a mainstay of Miles’s comedy musings.

He says: ‘I think class is really divisive, especially the way people perceive each other’s class and make assumptions about what their attitudes are without actually finding out.

‘It’s not something you should judge a person on, because it’s nothing to do with them really, it’s down to birth.

‘ You can judge people on their politics, because that’s something they’ve made their own mind up about – or should have.’

Reassuringly though, despite his deeply-held beliefs, the British comic doesn’t take himself too seriously and danced live on television for BBC’s Sport Relief in 2012.

‘I would not recommend dancing live on television to anyone, especially if they are as poor at it as I am!’

The song Miles danced to was Firestarter by The Prodigy, a bass-heavy dance track that required some hi-energy choreography.

‘I can’t remember whose idea it was that I danced to that song. I wouldn’t consider myself an out-and-out Prodigy fan, I’ve not seen them live or anything, but it’s a great song. The first noise you hear makes you go “oh here’s something”.’

And what advice would Miles give to future funny men and women?

‘Just have a go, keep doing it, find a voice and keep thinking about what you want to be doing.’

WHERE AND WHEN

Miles Jupp will be performing at the Ashcroft Arts Centre, Fareham on January 28 at 7.30pm. Tickets: £15, £13 concessions. Call 01329 223100 or visit ashcroft.org.uk for more details.